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Keep Your Projector Running Smoothly
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© December 10, 2009
It's the beginning of your church service, you hit the projector's on switch, the fan goes, but there's no picture. Now what? You try re-seating the lamp, but still nothing. You later take it to get repaired and find out that the projector's air filter was clogged causing it to overheat, and in-turn the lamp burned out. Now you have to dish out all kinds of money just to get it fixed when you could have taken a few minutes out of your schedule to maintain the projector.
Here are some tips on how to keep your
Clean your projector on a regular basis
Vacuuming is the most efficient way to clean filters, intakes and exhaust; however, check your projector's instructions on how to properly clean the filter. To determine how often you need to clean your projector's filter, Steve Long, Sanyo Rep. at Pacnor Marketing recommends, "When the projector is brand new to check the filter in 2 weeks, if it's not dirty then check again in another 2 weeks." Keep on checking the filter in 2 week cycles, you may find the filter only needs cleaned every 6 weeks.
Projectors are not air tight and they will eventually draw dust into them, despite all your regular maintenance. When the dust gets into your projector, one of the ways it affects your performance is by creating colored spots in your image. When you're projecting a white image and you see blue, yellow or magenta spots, it's an indication that the color panel is dirty. The different colors and the amount of spots tell you how dirty your projector's color panels are. Some people may not be bothered by this enough to get it cleaned; however, a periodic cleaning and tune-up by a projector technician is recommended to keep your projector running smoothly.
Location, Location, Location
As a general rule of thumb, leave at least 36" from the sides and rear of the projector to any obstruction (wall, beam, etc.) for airflow and hot air exhaust. However, be sure to check the manufacturer's specifications for how much room is needed for your projector so you do not void the warranty. Not leaving enough room could cause your projector to overheat, and you know what that means, a new lamp will be needed soon.
Be conscious of where you place your projector, you definitely don't want to keep it in a moist area for very long. The moisture seeping inside the internal parts can cause it to not start up. If this does happen, make sure to move your projector to a dry area for a couple of days before trying to start it. If it still does not work, it may need repaired or replaced. Long advises "Projector lifecycles will be best when operated in the low 70's". Be conscientious of the temperature around your projector. Your room could be in the 70's, but what's the temperature where the projector is located?
Allow your video projector to warm up and cool down
When starting up your projector let it warm up all the way prior to shutting it down. If you shutdown right away after turning it on, you'll most likely blow your lamp. The cool down process is also very important to the life of your lamp. Steve Long recommends, "When turning off your projector, let it go through the cool down cycle before moving or disconnecting it." Not allowing the projector to go through cool down could cause the unit to overheat and the lamp lifecycle to lessen.
Let your projector rest
If at all possible give your projector a break. Lamps have rare gasses inside and need to cool down. Giving the projector time to rest can extend the lifecycle of your lamp. So don't leave your projector running constantly or for hours on end, it will result in buying new lamps frequently.
By following the above tips, you can save money in repairs, lamp replacements, or even projector replacement. Take care of your projector, so you won't be left without a picture.
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